It's been a long busy summer during which I've really neglected to share any tales of terror from the Little Pet Shop of Horrors. However, it's not without good reason. So allow me to bring you this slimy little number, which in fact will be the very last that I'm able to share from the wretched hell of my former job.
Yes, I said former job.
You see, after sixty years in business, the Little Pet Shop of Horrors has been euthanized.
I was suprised when it happened, but only for a minute, because I realized that it had been pretty obvious what was going on for a while. Basically, the owner just ran out of money and had to declare bankruptcy. I don't know why this didn't occur to me when the store stopped receiving shipments of inventory (dog food and pet accessories) replenishment... ...or when my boss--who is salaried--had to start working sixty hours a week... ...or when the thirty puppies that regularly filled the kennels dwindled down to only seven.
Customers regularly said things like "oh, it's so empty in here, are you going out of business?" and I immediately got defensive, telling them "no, it's empty because we're SO BUSY and we sold everything." Really, if I hadn't disregarded the inquiries (just because they came from stupid customers) and actually considered the observations, it probably wouldn't have been so surprising to arrive at work one morning to find the owner waiting with moving boxes.
My co-worker, my boss, the owner, and I packed up the store into boxes, and packed up the few remaining animals into carrying cases. I'm the only one who didn't start crying. I did yell though, a LOT.
Because the store was in a mall, as soon as the rest of the mall opened for the day people started swarming at the gates like parasites. Are you closing? What's going on?? I ignored them, since I technically no longer had a job and therefore no obligation to deal with them, but none of them took a hint. You'd think the three adults crying would be enough to make them keep a polite distance, but no, not even in business any longer and I had pushy, rude, disrespectful custies hounding me.
"What about all the dogs, what will happen to them," and old hag asked, more than once, oblivious to the fact that she was being ignored.
I told her politely that she was being incredibly insensitive, that she was looking at a full-time employee who lost his four year job, a man who was dealing with closing his family business that he inherited from his father, and my boss who was due to have a baby in only two weeks... ...and whose boyfriend was also an employee of the pet store, meaning that her family officially had no income.
The hag's response to this information was, "but the dogs will be okay, right?"
My response, was to tell her that she was a soulless, compassionless, disrespectful cunt.
Another guy actually had the nerve to say that he was glad to see the store going out of business. I threatened to beat him up.
Eventually I called mall security and told them that if they didn't send someone to keep customers away from the store front that I would attack the next one that bothered me.
After that no one bothered us for the rest of the afternoon.
I can't remember the last time that I was so ashamed of human beings. I've seen customers do some pretty rude, dehumanizing, disrespectful things in the past, but that afternoon as they blatantly disregarded my coworkers' suffering was one of the times that I've hated them the most in my entire retail existance.
Thankfully I won't have to deal with them in that setting ever again.
I'm sure a lot of people are glad to hear that the Little Pet Shop of Horrors has closed. I am too, to be honest, but not for the same reasons. Having a job that puts you in the middle of a social issue that people think they feel strongly about is really hard. People automatically associate all pet-stores with animal cruelty and unfairly treat employees of pet stores like they're minions of Satan. Working a job where people that are ignorant to the real issues behind animal welfare openly condemn you on a daily basis breaks your spirit. Especially when you are a person that cares about animals, enough to know where the real issues are... ...because while my store may have closed, animal cruelty didn't suddenly end that day. It still exists, and the laws governing the animal industry are still a fucking disgrace.
Closing every pet store in existance still won't change this fact.
I've moved on though, I didn't waste any time looking for a new job.
I did end up finding one that seems (so far) to be a pretty good fit for me. I started not too long ago so once I'm settled I hope to bring you some new tales of terror.